Adoree' Jackson is one of the premier defensive backs in the 2014 recruiting class, and his new top-10 list reflects his skill set.
Tom VanHaaren and Erik McKinney report on the release of Jackson's new list:
Defensive back Adoree' Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Junipero Serra), the No. 5-ranked prospect in the ESPN 150, has narrowed his list to 10 schools.
Florida, Florida State, Illinois, LSU, Michigan, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State, Tennessee, UCLA and USC all made the cut, Jackson told ESPN's RecruitingNation in a text message.
That's still a huge list, but at least recruiting fans can start to pinpoint just exactly where Jackson may end up once February rolls around and it's time to send in faxes.
It's worth noting that there are some big-time programs on his list, and all of them seem to have a good chance in the early going of this race. In particular, Jackson had this to say about some of the SEC schools on his list, as well as Florida State, per VanHaaren and McKinney
"[LSU] produces defensive backs. Morris Claiborne, Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu -- all those guys are great players,” Jackson said. “And they play in the SEC against great competition that can get you ready. Growing up, I played basketball at the time, so seeing Tim Tebow down there at Florida and them winning national championships in basketball and football was big. And running track, they have a great track program. And it's the SEC -- it's great football and the best conference to play in at this time.
“Coach [Jeremy] Pruitt is there at FSU, and he came from Alabama, so he knows what he's doing. He's coached a lot of good defensive backs and I think he can do the same with me. Tennessee is close to home, and it's in the SEC. I like the track team there as well."
Michigan has been another program that has been mentioned in regard to Jackson as of late. The Wolverines just landed 5-star athlete/cornerback Jabrill Peppers, and the two could make quite an elite pairing in Michigan's secondary. In fact, according to Kyle Meinke of mlive.com, Peppers said during an interview on 100.9 WLUN-FM in Midland (MI), that he is trying to recruit Jackson himself:
"If you're a great corner, it doesn't mean anything if the guy that's playing alongside you is giving up touchdowns. A great corner makes another great corner, so that's the angle I'm trying to come at in recruiting Jackson and (five-star safety) Juju Smith."
One star commitment can often attract others, so look for Michigan to be a major player in the race for Jackson's commitment.
Turning our attention to the West Coast, he lives in Gardena, Calif., and that's only about 16 minutes away from USC. UCLA on the other hand is just under a half hour away.
With that in mind, both Southern California institutions should have a good chance to land Jackson. In the VanHaaren/McKinney report, Jackson cited the alumni base and education as two reasons he likes each school. The USC track program is also a draw for Jackson, who is a great long-jumper.
He's planning visits to Illinois, Tennessee, Michigan and Notre Dame (VanHaaren/McKinney), but it still could be too early to predict just which program has the edge before those visits take place, and the 2013 season comes and goes. The results of said season could end up having a big impact on his decision. He's a star recruit, and winning tends to draw in star recruits.
For now, give the early edge to Michigan, USC and UCLA, but keep an eye out for Illinois (his hometown), LSU and FSU now that Jeremy Pruitt is recruiting for the Seminoles.
This could end up being one of the more intriguing recruiting races of the 2014 class.
Jackson, the No. 2 cornerback in the nation, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings, is a talent worth the suspense.
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